Psychological Interventions in Sthaulya (Obesity)

Obesity is an offshoot of the modern age of machines and materialism. It is now called as `Globesity’ as it has become pandemic. It not only shortens the life span of person but makes his life miserable by causing many graves diseases such as high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, and diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases, obstructive sleep apnea & many types of cancers. Sthaulya is chronic medical condition caused by excessive accumulation of body fat and associated with most of medical disorders. Ayurveda described obesity as ‘Medoroga’ a ‘Samtarpnottha vyaadhi’. Core pathogenic mechanism of and its clinic - pathological symptoms, with entirety has been mentioned in Ayurvedic classics.

Sthaulya (Obesity) represents an emerging threat to public health. It is hazardous disease caused due to sedentary lifestyle, stress, regular consumption of junk foods & unhealthy diet. The prevalence of obesity has increased sharply in both adults & children’s. In India about 6 to 8 corer of population were obese. WHO projects that by 2015 approximately 2.3 billion adults will be overweight & more than 700 million will be obese across the world. If left unchecked they will continue to the ever increasing non communicable disease burden. Hence there is need of concern. This is the modest attempt to learn the psychological aspect of obesity & its psychosomatic treatment.

AtiAtisampuran, Aticintan & Harshanityata are some psychological factors also playing a role in causing obesity. Disease condition is manifested by appearance of various signs and symptoms [Ling].

Maharshi caraka identified Javoprodh, Daurblya, Kruchhavyavayata as psycho-pathological changes in Sthaulya. In addition to these symptoms Caraka included kshudhatimatra, Pipasatiyog (problematic eating & drinking) as other risk factors. Mindless eating, frequent snacking on high calories food, overeating and night eating syndrome [NES] are often found in many obese individuals.

Aharam cha atikankshati-

Sense of insecurity, depression and failure generate tendency to eat more. Emotional excitement can be suppressed with a heavy meals, A fat person generally tries to develop a false sense of securing by indulging in overeating.

Ninditaha purushaha tesham-

Carakacharya stigmatized obese person “atisthaulya” as one of despicable person [Nindita]. Viewing the contemptuous attitude of the society views obesity very negatively and tends to believe that people who are obese are ``weak willed’’ and unmotivated [Mandotsaha]. Obese individuals often aware of these negative views and internalize them, putting themselves at risk of disorder of mood, anxiety and substance abuse .They perceives interpersonal and work related discrimination, often suffer from low self esteem as a result and feel uncomfortable with their bodies [medomamsaativrudhdatvaatcchalasphigudarastana, daurgandhyam, svedabadha]. These feeling may lead to strain [tremendous internal conflict] on their intimate and romantic relationship [Javoprodh, Kruchhavyavayata].

Asamrthata bhayakaranam (cha. Soo. 25/40)

Obese individuals typically made multiple attempts to lose weight, with little or no success. Their failed attempts results in discouragement, frustration, hopelessness and learned helplessness about the prospect of losing weight in future on their own.

Ayathaa upacayotsaaha| chakramadvisha

Fat people make obesity a convenient excuse to avoid the social responsibilities and consequently with rearing a family reflecting their evasive psychology.

Psychological assessment and interventions have become an integral part of a multidisciplinary approach treating obesity.

Sthoolanam guru cha aptarpanam cha ishtam (ch. Soo. 21/20)

Caraka explored classical and operant conditioning traditional behavioral therapy models treating obesity. In classical conditioning eating behaviors are associated with activities. More recently cognitive therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy [CBT] have become an important aspect of the treatment of obesity.

Overweight and Sthaulya (obesity) continue to increase substantially both in India and Worldwide affecting all ages, sexes and races. The childhood epidemic of obesity evoke a concerning threat.

The word ‘Ninditaha vishesha’ emphasis on the features of obese person. The stigma associated with obesity causes bulling in school as well as childhood psychiatric morbidity.

Obesity is physical state that causes constant anxiety and guilt [Asamarthata bhayakaraNaam (ch. Soo. 25/40)].

A multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of obesity that addresses psychological, social, environmental and biological factors is critical to ensure comprehensive care. Cognitive behavioral therapy [CBT] is utilized in the treatment of obesity as a way to help individuals change their negative eating behavior and incorporate healthy life style changes.

Grudhnum abhyavharyeshu

Fat people maintain their psychological balance by overeating and gradually they form carbohydrate addiction [kshutpipasa asahatva].


More by :  Dr. Jayshri Damke

Top | Ayurveda

Views: 3412      Comments: 0

Name *

Email ID

Comment *
Verification Code*

Can't read? Reload

Please fill the above code for verification.